You’re Not Truly East Asian Until You’ve Tried These Local Delicacies

Although there is a long list of iconic East Asian dishes (Dumplings or a Maki Roll, anyone?), there are also some local East Asian delicacies which silently fade in the background. Mere cultural delicacies truly reflect the richness of the East Asian palate. Perhaps you grew up eating some of these, or at least have heard of it from a friend who recently backpacked across the region.

They might not be as popular on a global scale, but they compose the unique East Asian flavors and taste.

Century egg – A more popular and common Chinese delicacy, century eggs are made from preserved duck or quailed eggs which is submerged in a saline solution for months long. The process gives the egg a creamy, jelly texture. But hey, at least it still tastes like your regular egg!

Chicken feet – Grilled and marinated chicken feet is popular among countries like South Korea and the Philippines. It tastes like your usual chicken, but it highlights the flavorful marinated skin and its chewy tendons. If anything, eating the dish can be considered a textural experience.

Bird’s nest soup – This is one popular dish in Chinese restaurants. Basically, it is a soup made of cooked bird spit. Swiftlets, which are common birds in China, are known to build their hard nests from their own gummy saliva. This ingredient is considered so rare that it is unsurprisingly expensive – but it is also rich in iron, potassium, calcium, and magnesium, so why not?

Natto – A nutritious Japanese dish, Natto is well-loved by children and adults alike. It is composed of fermented soybeans which infamously reeks (the scent is often compared to dirty, old socks). This is a common breakfast option served along with rice.

Durian – This fruit is branded in Southeast Asia as the King of Fruits because of its thorny husk, which can be likened to a crown. However, it is also notorious for its foul stench. A lot of hotels in the region even ban the fruit from being brought inside hotel rooms. If you can stand the penetrating smell, you’ll find that Durian tastes creamy and sweet!

Fish cake – A popular street food in Korea, skewered fish cake is well-loved by hungry people on the go. It is commonly made of processed seafood meat such as that of ground white fish. Fish cake can also be served in broth, which is perfect for the cold winter nights.

Best of Stephen King: 5 Horror Books to Read

October is the month of Halloween. You don’t really have to carve a pumpkin just to feel the Halloween vibes, nor is there a need for you to dress up all spooky for the event. This hauntingly exciting celebration is the perfect time for you to do simple activities like binge-watching cult classic Horror movies and reading up on suspense stories.

Who knows, curling up in home while reading a good Stephen King book may just be your perfect Halloween celebration yet. Stock up on hot chocolate and prepare your favorite blanket to accompany you through the long night.

The Shining
You might have seen the 1980 film directed by Stanley Kubrick, but the book version of The Shining certainly has more heart than its on-screen adaptation. The story revolves around Jack Torrance, whose life was falling apart as he loses his mind to the Overlook Hotel. It also explores the suffering and the abuse Torrance’s family endured.

Are you a big fan of clowns? If not, you might as well brace yourself while reading this book. It involves Pennywise, a demented clown who lives in the town’s sewers and is responsible for a chain of child murders in the area. The book has caused a lot of readers to go frantic and fear clowns, and it has a recent movie adaptation released in the later part of 2017.

The Stand
This post-apocalyptic story begins with a deadly virus (called Captain Trips), which wipes out 99 percent of the planet. Survivors come together and divide themselves within two camps – and later ends with an ultimate war between good against evil, the last stand. There are lots of story lines to follow and in the process, it is inevitable for you to root for more than one character.

Salem’s Lot
Vampires are commonly portrayed in mainstream media as sparkling, gorgeous creatures, but the vampires in Salem’s Lot are nothing but violent and terrifying. This book contains palpable tension which builds up with each new chapter, and it plays around with the element of a small-town setting and the theme of isolation.

If you’ve ever wondered what would vampires look like in a contemporary society, then this book must be on your to-read list.

The Dead Zone
This book centers on the life of school teacher Johnny Smith, who wakes up with psychic abilities after a coma. He then meets a deranged politician whom he knows is destined to become the next president – and thus places him in a conflicting position as to whether he should assassinate him. The book has a 1983 movie version starring Christopher Walken and Martin Sheen.

Dealing with a Regretful Career

Regretfully a lot of people maximize their time way too much on things they later realize are of utmost unimportance which leads them to regret. Not everybody does what they want. Some people end up realizing that they’ve wanted something else all along but then it is a bit too late for that.

How do you deal with regrets?
Memories are tricky, they can be altered and distorted depending on the mood we are in when we try to dive into them. Regret is like broken glasses, you won’t be able to see things the way they actually are. People from all walks of life share this same sentiment at least once in their lives. Regret is such a powerful anchor, it drowns us into the sea of memories while altering them at the same time.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself when you are feeling regretful about your career:

1. Which part do I regret?
Be as specific as possible. There can be no more than three major regrets you can name. Don’t make a list, be frank with yourself and blurt out the three things you regret. It would be unfair to say that you regret everything you’ve done. This would be a totally bias deduction based on your emotions you are experiencing at present instead of how things actually are.

2. Why do I regret it?
Why do you regret those three things? Explain yourself. Here’s the catch, you aren’t allowed to pinpoint the mistake at other people. The only person in the picture should be yourself. Make sure to let it all out.
Okay, you’ve allowed yourself a release, this is necessary in dealing with any problem you’ve experienced and regret is not different at all. Letting out how you feel makes it lighter and easier for you to see things. If you’re wearing a hat, there would be no way for you to see it unless you take it off. But hey, you shouldn’t be stuck here. Let’s move on.

Here’s what you have to do next:

1. Look at everything as a whole
A situation is just a situation. Your career status is just a status. How it makes you feel is a hundred percent up to you. Your reaction to the situation is a hundred percent in your hands.

2. Look at your achievements
You can’t forget the good you’ve done. Whether big or small compared to others, it isn’t about them. It is a hundred percent up to you. Look at the achievements you’ve done over your career and ponder on them.

Don’t allow yourself to react to what others say. Do not put your contentment in their hands. Make yourself feel how you want to feel.

Brian Imanuel: Asia’s Hottest New Rapper

Brian Imanuel, also known as Rich Chigga, and now Rich Brian, skyrocketed to fame with his first viral video “Dat $tick”, which became his key to being signed to a US-based record label 88rising, owned by Sean Miyashiro, and it even gained praises from the industry’s top hip-hop artists. It was even approved by Ghostface Killah from Wu Tang Clan, resulting in a remix of “Dat $tick” (with Pouya), adding fire to the already-lit track. From there, Imanuel has been releasing songs like “Who Dat Be” and collaborating with different rappers like XXXTENTACION and 21 Savage. By the end of 2017, he announced that he would be changing his name from Rich Chigga to Rich Brian, saying that the name is quite insensitive for some cultures.

Every track Immanuel has created has been warmly welcomed by the music industry, until he released his most awaited full-length album project Amen last 2 February 2018, featuring a fellow 88riser Joji, Migos’ Offset, and fresh names like NIKI and AUGUST 08. Two days later it reached the number one spot in the iTunes hip-hop listing, making Imanuel the first Asian artist to reach that spot in hip-hop history.

Not so much far from his musical style, each track has a signature Brian Imanuel style, veering away from the mainstream “triplet flow” or sometimes called as the “Migos flow”, a common beat pattern used by rappers nowadays. But I think Imanuel’s signature musicality can be seen in his lyrics, a mixed story of his reality, his beginnings, and even a dose of comedy and irony. This might be his distinct style that shakes the world of the superficial in the world of hip-hop.

The whole album proves just that, starting off on the first track “Amen”. The song talks about how Imanuel deals with the fame that he instantly gained after posting a few tracks online. Imanuel also mentioned that he learned most of his English from the internet since he was homeschooled most of his education life. Unlike any other rapper who would seldom talk about his or her beginnings in his or her work, he frequently raps about how he grew up or about his constant communication with his parents, which is kind of an Asian thing. In this track, he also indirectly apologized for shaking the hip hop’s status quo with his new and fresh approach to hip-hop. He should be because we need something new in the hip-hop scene, minus the Migos flow.

“See Me” was the first single released prior the whole release of the album. Released on New Year’s Day, this was the first song officially released under the new name Rich Brian, marking a new beginning for Imanuel. In this track, Imanuel reflected on what his fame had done on him, and how he has been doing while enjoying his newfound fame.

Previously released songs were also featured on the album, like “Chaos” and everyone’s favourite “Glow Like Dat.”

Get to Know the Different Types of Coffee

Most people nowadays cannot start their day without a cup of latte, cappuccino or mocha in their hands, that is why it’s a perfect time to set up a coffee business, such as a mobile coffee cart, coffee shop, and even coffee catering.

Before you can set up your business, however, you need to be an expert in the product you’re selling. Let’s get to know what’s in one of the world’s most addictive drinks and the different varieties of coffee drinks commonly sold in mobile coffee and coffee shops.

It Begins with the Coffee Beans

There are two species of coffee that are used in most coffee businesses, such as the robusta and the arabica beans, with the latter making up for most of the coffee produced around the world.

• Robusta Beans. This type of coffee is harvested from the Coffea canephora plant and is valued for its bitterness and low acidic content. Robusta is used primarily for making espresso, instant coffee, and ground coffee blends. It has twice the amount of antioxidants and caffeine than the arabica beans and is easier to produce because the plant has greater yield and is resistant to most diseases.

• Arabica Beans. The beans are harvested from the Coffea arabica plant and is valued for its highly caffeinated but less acidic and less bitter flavor. It also has more concentrated sugar and lipids than robusta, although it’s more expensive because the coffee plant is susceptible to diseases and insects.

Variation of Coffee Drinks

Although robusta beans are often found only in most coffee blends nowadays, there is no shortage of the types of coffee drinks that you can sell in your mobile coffee cart or coffee catering business. There are even coffee dishes and coffee drinks mixed with other types of beverages. Most coffee drinks from in Singapore however, are based on coffee and espresso and differ only in the strength of the flavor and the additional ingredients.

Here are some of the common coffee drinks you might want to include in your coffee push cart.

• Brewed Coffee

Brewed, filtered, and drip-brewed coffee is made using hot water on the roasted and ground coffee beans. The water is then filtered, leaving only the flavor and oil from the beans. This method is common in most coffee cart businesses.

• French Press

This type of coffee is made with the use of a French press brewer, which is equipped with a plunger to separate the coarse coffee grounds from the fine coffee ground.

• Espresso

One of the most popular coffee drinks you can sell in your mobile coffee is the espresso, which is made using the espresso machine. This coffee maker uses a small amount of boiling water and steam through compact ground coffee. Espresso is used to make popular coffee drinks, such as mocha, Americano, latte, Cuban, caffe crema, espresso Romano, rissetto, macchiato, and cappuccino.

• Cold Brew

This type of brewing process doesn’t use hot water, instead, the ground coffee beans are exposed to cold water for at least 12 hours.

• Iced Coffee

Iced coffee is different from the cold brewed coffee because its preparation follows the usually hot brew process, but the drink is served cold with ice. Some of the most common iced coffee drinks you can serve in your coffee push cart are frappe, ice shot, shakerato, mazagran, freddo cappuccino, palazzo, and freddo espresso.

• Coffee with Milk

There are different ways to prepare coffee with milk that you can serve in your mobile coffee cart business, such as the café au lait, cappuccino, espressino, latte, cortado, macchiato, latte macchiato, Viennese mélange, white coffee, kopi susu, flat white, egg coffee, and many more.

• Boiled Coffee

Also called percolated coffee, boiled coffee uses a specialized pot to brew the coffee by cycling the hot water through the ground coffee.

• Turkish Coffee

This is a type of traditional boiled coffee where the beans are ground into fine powder and then boiled to produce foam.

• Flavored Coffee

Flavored coffee is a combination of coffee and other ingredients such as cream, honey, cocoa powder, cinnamon, chocolate syrup, whipped cream, piloncillo, mocha syrup, Irish cream, hazelnut, and many more. If you want to set up a mobile coffee cart business with flavored coffee as your main product, you should experiment with different ingredients to create your own signature drink.

• Coffee with Tea

If you can mix coffee with milk, then you can also mix it with tea. Some of the most popular coffee and tea drinks you can serve at your coffee cart are red tie, ying yong or yuanyang, black tie, and chai latte.

• Coffee with Alcohol

Coffee and alcoholic beverages are also a thing and are sometimes referred to as liqueur coffee, which contain coffee, cream, cane sugar, whipped cream, and your choice of alcohol. Some of the most popular drinks you can serve in your mobile coffee are Baileys Irish cream; Russian coffee with vodka; Carajillo with whisky, brandy, rum or anisette; Kula with Amarula; Thai coffee with Sangsom; witch’s coffee with Strega; corfu coffee with koum quat; and brandy coffee.

• Vacuum Coffee

As the name suggests, this type of coffee is created using a vacuum coffee brewer, which has two chambers to produce the vacuum and vapor. This is commonly used to create coffee for food such as broths and hot cocktails.

• Instant Coffee

Instant coffee has been a life saver for most people at work and school and some businesses also capitalize on its popularity by making their own special instant coffee. For your mobile coffee business, you should learn the process of packing dehydrated granules or powder or concentrated liquid coffee using your own recipe.

• Decaffeinated Coffee

Decaffeinated coffee or decaf is a variety that has lower caffeine content than other types. Currently, there are four methods of removing caffeine that you should be familiar with.

Meanings of Popular Wedding Flowers and How to Use Them for Your Wedding

Choosing the flowers for your bridal bouquet doesn’t have to turn into such a stressful experience. You can always start off with incorporating your favorite flowers and work your way from there. To some brides-to-be, there might also be flowers they hold dear than most. Perhaps this flower contains cherished memories; such as being the very first flower given by their fiancée on their first date or being their mother’s favorite flower. It would be a nice homage to include them in your bouquet or floral decor.

Most bouquets sold by a wedding florist are anchored on the theme of love. To commemorate such a special event in a person’s life, it is important to include flowers which have romantic meanings and associations over the years. You can always go on with your personal interpretation of your desired bouquet, but allowing your florist to help you choose your wedding flowers is also one great option. If anything, your florist will help you bring your dream bouquet to life.

Your choices can range from a variety of sensational flowers, from the humble daisy to the beautiful rose. Getting inspired by mood boards in online aesthetic sites such as Pinterest can be of great help in brainstorming ideas, but nothing beats personally consulting a wedding florist. Keep in mind that your bridal flowers aren’t limited to your bouquet alone — it also involves your centerpiece flowers and even your wedding car decor.


Orchids are among the popular choices for wedding flowers especially in tropical countries. A number of brides in Singapore have also chosen this unique flower for its inherent charm and appeal. Orchids are known to symbolically represent beauty, which makes it fitting to have in one’s wedding. They also range in several varieties which you can choose from, available in shades of white, purple, and green.

They are often used in traditional and modern-themed weddings. As it remains a popular choice, a bridal bouquet shop for brides in Singapore that has orchids are notably breathtaking when used as part of full floral arrangements or minimalist single stems.


Peony is a flower which symbolizes happiness, which makes it a relevant option for a wedding. Aside from being a part of the bridal bouquet, the blooms are also a popular option for a wedding car decor. It’s not a surprise why it became a staple for bridal flowers. Peonies are composed of full flowers with fluffy and soft petals, and their size easily helps in filling a floral arrangement.

These are perfect for weddings with pale themes, especially because peonies combine well with light-colored arrangements. Not only that, the flowers also smell fragrant.


Daisies are one of the humble options for your floral decor. They come in a variety of sizes with colors you can choose from accordingly, making it a traditional and iconic bridal bloom. If your wedding takes on a vintage theme, the charm of daises is perfect in adding a nice nostalgic touch to the event. The flower is also associated with purity and innocence, making it a sought-after choice among Singapore brides for many years.

The blooms are not only lovely, but they are also noted to be low-maintenance. Whether you choose the iconic white and yellow daisies or opt for the bright and cheerful colors of gerbera daisies, it is undoubtedly a good choice for your wedding.


A romantic symbol, roses are certainly famous in every bridal bouquet. Roses symbolize love, hence it’s not merely a beautiful statement but it is also meaningful. Although they are pricey around certain seasons, the gorgeousness of these flowers are worth it. The inclusion of roses in your wedding flowers also easily give off the idea that something special is happening. Fortunately, the blooms are available in a rainbow-like choice of colors. Roses also pair well with other flowers, making it stress-free on your part to create luscious and lovely wedding flower arrangements.

Roses are also of sturdy nature. In fact, they are considered to be sturdier than other roses, which makes them a good option for corsages and boutonnieres. They are also perfect for elevated and hanging arrangements.


A few stems of hydrangea easily fills up your centerpiece or any other wedding floral decor. With a variety of shades to work with, your wedding florist knows how to make use of these flowers to achieve volume and desired texture in your floral arrangements. Hydrangeas are also flexible in terms of style and theme, making it compatible to incorporate in almost all weddings.

These blooms are perfect among tall and exquisite table arrangements. Additionally, it brings a hint of magical touch especially when arranged on a glass jar. Hydrangeas are also noted to be friendly among people with certain flower allergies.


Another wedding blooms staple, carnations are among the well-loved flowers by many brides in Singapore. The flowers are notably affordable (in comparison with other popular blooms) and they are available in a myriad of colors for you to freely choose from. Thanks to their sturdy nature, carnations are often incorporated in various flower arrangements such as flower ball centerpieces and ceremonial stage back drops.

These blooms have an inherent ruffled texture, adding a perfect texture when it comes to vintage-themed table centerpieces. If you can’t afford an arrangement composed entirely of pricey roses, carnations are also considered a great alternative. The good news is: they also blend well with roses!

Choosing the perfect flowers for your weddings blooms can get overwhelming at some point. It is only understandable, since you are presented a myriad options and you may end up liking more than one floral arrangement. Regardless, you don’t have to be a flower expert to sort out the predicament of your wedding flowers. With the help of a florist, you can easily work your way with the flowers you like, flowers which are friendly on your budget, and flowers which work well with your theme. Take it from there!

4 Easy Ways to Avoid Sugar

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: sugar is the number one enemy when trying to lose weight. Furthermore, an uncontrollable sweet tooth can cause diabetes, in addition to weight gain. Fortunately, you can do some little tweaks to your diet to help reduce your sugar intake and knock down a few pounds and risks for diseases. Here are some easy steps to help you avoid—or at least reduce—sugar consumption in a day.

1. Know Your Go-To Beverage
Try your best to avoid the temptation of getting yourself a bottle of soda or juice. When trimming down sugar intake, soda and juices are the first ones to get rid off in your diet. Instead, drink three to four litres of water a day to control your cravings for sweet drinks. If you can, try the water-apple-cider concoction. Mix two tablespoons of apple cider in a tall glass of water; drink this once a day. You can a dollop of natural honey to sweeten (in a good way) the drink a bit.

2. Buy Unsweetened Foods and Sweeten Them Yourself
If you just can’t help it and you want to eat something sweet, buy unsweetened food and sweeten them your own way. For instance, if you want a sweet yogurt for snacks, get a plain one and swirl in a teaspoon of maple syrup or organic honey in it. Do the same if you want sweeter oatmeal for breakfast. Instead of buying a box of flavoured oatmeal, get an unflavoured one and flavour it yourself with some honey and slices of fresh fruits.

3. Choose Sweet fruits Over Sweetened Foods
One of the favourite tricks of fitness experts is to replace sugar-laden foods with naturally sweet fruits. For example, to replace strawberry jam for your PB&J, warm up some frozen strawberries. A tablespoon of jam gives you 50 calories and is typically packed with three kinds of sweeteners: corn syrup, fructose and sugar. Half a cup of strawberries, warmed up and seasoned with a bit of cinnamon only contains 25 calories, plus added antioxidants, fibre and vitamins. Fruits—whether whether fresh, grilled, pureed or baked—make a healthy substitute for sugar in almost any dish, from salads to baked goods.

4. Make Your Own Salad Dressing
Bottles of salad dressings you often find in supermarkets can be secretly loaded with sugar. Your best bet? A home-made dressing. Master a healthy and delicious home-made dressing, and you’ll start craving for salads more. Isn’t that a good kind of craving?

Too much sugar is bad, but it’s also unrealistic to totally deprive yourself of a little sweetness. The best you can do is to choose your sweets wisely and always choose the natural sweets over artificially flavoured ones.

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